AN EXCITING and potentially lucrative week for Bendigo trainer Shane Fliedner got off to the perfect start at Benalla on Monday.
Fliedner, who will saddle up his stable star St Edward's Crown in this Saturday's Group 1 Thousand Guineas at Caulfield, kick-started a busy six days with a victory with another of his rising stars Queen Guinevere.
The four-year-old mare has shown plenty of potential throughout the early part of her career, which has included two wins and three placings from 10 starts, with both Fliedner and winning jockey Harry Coffey both confident of better things to come following her 2049m win.
"She was ridden today how we expected her to go last start," said Fliedner in reference to a disappointing ninth on the mare's home track late last month over 1600m.
"It got just a bit busy at Bendigo with her ... she's still a very immature horse.
"Being by (Group 1-winning sire) Camelot, I think she will be a better five and six-year-old.
"As long as she wins a couple of races this time in we will be happy."
Fliedner, who will be chasing his first Group 1 win in Saturday's $1 million feature race at Caulfield on Saturday, believed Queen Guinevere would eventually make her mark over longer distances than 2000m.
"She's still learning ... (Monday's) a starting point, which is good," he said.
"I think once the carnival is over in Melbourne there will be a few soft fillies and mares races getting around in town, so we will probably concentrate on that."
On St Edward's Crown, Fliedner is hopeful of a bold performance from his three-year-old filly, who has not been far away in each of her last three starts at Moonee Valley, Caulfield and Flemington, all in Listed or Group race company.
"We'd like a good barrier draw (on Tuesday). She's certainly not one of the fancied ones, but if she runs up to her best, she would be in the mix of the first six or eight," he said.
"They (Group 1 wins) are hard to find."
Fliedner already has a pair of Group 3 victories and three Group 2 placings to his credit and is no doubt relishing his opportunity at a Group 1, no matter what the odds.
St Edward's Crown will be the second Bendigo horse to contest a Group 1 in the past two weeks after the Shaun Dwyer-trained Miss Leonidas finished second behind Nature Strip in the $1 million Moir Stakes at Moonee Valley on AFL grand final eve.
Meanwhile, Fliedner's nephew Harry Coffey predicted a bright future for Queen Guinevere after her win on Monday.
"She was actually going to win by a lot further, but she just wanted to hang in and once I got to the front she had a good look around," he said.
"Even though the margin wasn't much it was really pretty soft. When I asked her for an effort she moved up really quickly.
"She's a horse who is taking a long time to put it all together, but over these sorts of distances she is definitely going to win better races than today.
"I was pretty confident coming here today because I knew what she could do.
"Shane's team is going really well at the moment and they have virtually got a runner in a Group 1 on Saturday, so good luck to them."
Racing returns to Bendigo on Wednesday, with the first of eight races scheduled for 1pm.
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